Scroll Down Scroll Up

Webinar: Rethinking support after dementia diagnosis

Unmet needs and evidence for rehabilitation with Prof Lee-Fay Low and A/Prof Lyn Phillipson

Please note, the live webinar was held on 11 November 2021 but you can view the recorded version, including the Q&A session via our YouTube Channel.

Australians with dementia and carers receive minimal health treatments and psychosocial supports following diagnosis. This webinar, presented by Professor Lee-Fay Low and chaired by A/Prof Lyn Phillipson, is essential for healthcare professionals working in dementia diagnosis and care.

The webinar describes the unmet needs of people living with dementia and carers for information, psychosocial support, treatments to optimise function and wellbeing. There is a strong evidence base that physical exercise, cognitive stimulation therapy, occupational therapy and carer programs improve outcomes for people with dementia. There is also emerging evidence for the benefits of multidisciplinary rehabilitation programs and psychotherapy for anxiety and depression associated with dementia.

The webinar presents practical suggestions on how clinicians can help people with dementia and carers obtain rehabilitation and additional supports after diagnosis.

References and links provided by participants in the Q&A

Associate Professor Lyn Phillipson: Here is the link to the new Post-Diagnostic Support program offered by Dementia Australia

Associate Professor Lyn Phillipson: People can also now access the dedicated information and resources focused on the immediate 12 months post diagnosis at our new Forward with Dementia website:
For healthcare professionals
For people with dementia
For carers

Associate Professor Lyn Phillipson: The systematic review (Bahar-Fuchs 2019) that Lee-Fay is discussing about evidence for cognitive training is an open access paper and can be accessed here:

Bahar-Fuchs, A., Martyr, A., Goh, A. M., Sabates, J., & Clare, L. (2019). Cognitive training for people with mild to moderate dementia. The Cochrane database of systematic reviews3(3), CD013069.

Emily Ong: My Life, My Goals

Meredith Gresham: The main webpage for the COPE program is

Associate Professor Lyn Phillipson: All of the resources and tools on the ‘Forward with dementia’ website can be printed for people who would prefer written information or have difficulties getting online
Resources for healthcare professionals
Resources for people with dementia and carers

Jacqueline Wesson: Hi all, systematic review presented today at AAG conference re commercially available brain training programs = “insufficient empirical evidence” but still fun to do (Nguyen et al 2021)
Nguyen, L., Murphy, K., & Andrews, G. (2021). A Game a Day Keeps Cognitive Decline Away? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Commercially-Available Brain Training Programs in Healthy and Cognitively Impaired Older Adults. Neuropsychology review, 10.1007/s11065-021-09515-2. Advance online publication.

Associate Professor Lyn Phillipson: Thanks Mel. That is great feedback. Thanks for letting us know. At Forward with Dementia we welcome feedback on the resources we have developed or any ideas for new resources too!

Christine Sender-Ivanov: War Memorial Hospital, Waverley NSW, runs the evidence based Integrated Rehabilitation for Early Dementia (iREADi) Program.  9 week post diagnostic ability-focussed rehabilitation, education and care coordination for the person with early dementia AND their carer/s. iREADi is facilitated by a specialist multidisciplinary team known as the MOD Squad. For small groups of 15-20  have 1:1 MDT support for goal attainment and develop onging peer and carer support.  It is free and available to South East Sydney residents. You are welcome to call me on 02-936 for more information and discuss potential participants.

Lorna Huang: At War Memorial Hospital, we have trialled a zoom-version of our iREADi course, and that has worked well. Could be accessed by people in the country or anywhere.

Meredith Gresham: I’d like to draw attention to a handbook that assists service providers interested in commencing an evidence informed program to support independence and function for people with dementia. Developed by the Cognitive Decline Partnership Centre see:

Rob Crouch: Thanks Henry for the info on the lambert initative

Lorna Huang: Dr Cathy Taylor has published some lovely work on training communication partners in the language-lead dementias (frontal lobe dementias) – Posted by dr Wendy Longley (on Lorna’s log-in)
Speech and language therapy approaches to managing primary progressive aphasia
Primary Progressive Aphasia Education and Support Groups: A Clinical Evaluation
Speech and language therapy in primary progressive aphasia: a critical review of current practice


Yun-hee Jeon: I-HARP is a program that addresses motivation in the delivery of rehabilitation interventions – our nurses and OTs work well.

Warren Reid: St Vincents Community OTs are still visiting families.